Five Key Strategies for B2B Website Home Pages

There are hundreds of guides and blogs about to create content for your website, but I have seen very few on what to put on the most important page. But despite the lack of formal guidance, there is a relatively high level of consistency between the home pages of B2B software vendors – particularly in industry subsectors. In my last post I shared the thirteen most common types of content B2B software vendors display on their home pages. Besides a desire to adhere to convention and make their website navigation familiar to new users, there are five common strategies that software vendors are employing:

#1) Delivering a Message

First, companies are trying to deliver a message – typically about their capabilities and their differentiation. There are a variety of ways to deliver the message, but common types of content include:

  • View a list of product features
  • Watch an animated explainer video or demo
  • Hear the CEO talk mission/vision

 

#2) Lead Generation

Second, companies want to generate leads.  There are a variety of conversion strategies, but the most common calls to action that software vendors use are:

  • Free trial registrations
  • Product demo requests
  • Appointment to speak with a sales representative

 

There is a relatively high level of standardization across B2B software companies in the first two strategies. For the remaining three categories there starts to be more divergence in approach.

 

#3) Secondary Lead Generation

Many end-users are not far enough along in their buyer’s journey for the primary call to action. For example, the user may still be deciding whether they want to fund a project. In these cases, a product demo, free trial, or sales appointment may be premature. Most companies therefore offer a secondary call to action that encourages the user to drill deeper into the website. Examples of secondary calls to action include getting the user to click on more detailed content specific to their vertical industry or buyer persona. Others might be more generic content about product features or case studies. Many companies also offer secondary calls to action that drive the user to engage and share their identity. Examples might include downloading a white paper or replaying an on-demand product demo.

In my experience, the content choices are less strategic than they might appear. Secondary calls to action typically are driven more by the content you actually have than the content you ideally would use. For example, companies that licensed a Forrester Wave or Gartner Magic Quadrant are more likely to display it on the home page. Companies that have great case studies from leading brand names are likely to showcase them on the home page.

 

#4) Establish Credibility

Another common strategy is to message new users with evidence of the company’s leadership and/or credibility. For smaller, lesser known brands, the home page is usually attempting to convince the visitor why the company should be considered as a potential solution to the problem. For larger, well-established brands, the home page is usually attempting to prove why the company is better than the competition. To support these credibility claims, companies often use content such as:

  • Customer case studies, logos, and quotations from well-recognized brands or companies that the end-user will view to be “just like us”
  • Partner logos and quotations from highly respected consulting firms or software vendors
  • Corporate statistics to show the size, scope, and sophistication of the product
  • Awards and recognition to demonstrate the industry leadership of the company

 

#5) Repeat Visitors

A fifth strategy that many companies attempt on their home pages is to drive repeat visitors.  Many buyers visit websites during purchasing cycles, but rarely revisit the sites after the sales process is complete. As a result, many companies opt to keep their website home pages fresh with:

  • Recent news about mergers and acquisitions, product launches, or customer wins
  • Upcoming events including webinars, seminars, or appearances at tradeshows
  • Latest blog posts or content assets such as ebooks, videos, podcasts

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